Castle of the Walking Dead (1967) – German Gothic Horror

December 1st, 2006

Here’s one for fans of Hammer, AIP Gothics or Mario Bava and his ilk. Castle of the Walking Dead is a German made gothic horror film, from the director and cast of the Karl May Westerns. It stars Christopher Lee as the evil Count Regula with Lex Barker (La Dolce Vita (1960)), and the attractive Karen Dor (You Only Live Twice (1967)) as the heroic leads and is very impressively directed by Harald Reinl (Treasure of Silver Lake (1962)) with some of the best gothic sets and locations ever committed to film.

Read the new Mondo-Esoterica review

Available on a very good German DVD with English soundtrack and a variety of interesting special features

The Complete Guide to the Karl May Westerns

November 29th, 2006

Here’s one for those of you who think you know every genre of cinema. Among the first of the European Westerns, inspiration to the Spaghetti Western boom and the series that brought German cinema back to life after the Second World War, the Karl May Westerns were 11 epic sized films based on the works of popular German author Karl May. Incredibly sucessful, and still widely loved in Germany, they are almost unknown in the UK/USA despite having English language DVD releases in Germany – so with a lot of research and film watching, I present: The Complete Guide to the Karl May Westerns.

The Blind Dead Ride Again!

November 18th, 2006

The final two films in the Blind Dead collection – not half as good as the first two:
Ghost Galleon (1974)

Night of the Seagulls (1975)

Both recently released by Blue Underground in the Blind Dead Collection boxset, and now available as single disc releases too. Enjoy.

All new menu page…

November 17th, 2006

Well, we’ve finally adopted frames (welcome to 1996!) and thus a new look DVD review menu page is here. Any thoughts/comments etc., please e-mail me.

Menu Page

Corman, Poe and Price – Midnight movie double bill… part 2

November 13th, 2006

We return to the world of the AIP Gothics, with a double bill of more comic entries in the series:

The Raven (1963) and Comedy of Terrors (1964)

Cinema for adults only!

November 3rd, 2006

A nice collection of new reviews uploaded in the past week:

Two new 1980s Jess Franco releases from Severin Films – Macumba Sexual and Mansion of the Living Dead.

Some very adult animation in Once Upon a Girl (1976) – an X rated twist on the classic fairytales, from the animators of Scooby-Doo! Due to DVD on 14th November.
Finally, a nice double bill of softcore cable erotica from the 1980s, from legendary producer Harry Alan Towers. Not for the hardcore fans, but a nice nostalgic trip with Black Venus and Lady Libertine.

You might notice that we have been making some minor edits to existing reviews – based on feedback we have been cutting down the sprawling plot synopses that some of the reviews had, to help reduce spoilers and make for easier to read reviews. Any more suggestions, please send them in. Watch out for some great new reviews in November…

The Blind Dead Ride!

October 25th, 2006

Taking a break from Hammer, a look at two cult favourite Spanish horror films:

Tombs of the Blind Dead (1971)

Return of the Evil Dead (1973)

Both recently released by Blue Underground in the Blind Dead Collection boxset, and now available as single disc releases too.

The Ultimate Hammer Collection – part 2

October 19th, 2006

More reviews from the Ultimate Hammer Collection, a double-bill of demonic horror, and the best and worst of Hammer’s output:

The Devil Rides Out (1968)
One of Hammer’s best, and effective horror film with great direction, production and acting, with a decent script. The Optimum DVD lacks the very good audio commentary of the ABUS disc, but has a good print, and original mono track.

To the Devil a Daughter (1976)
A simply bad film – good acting and decent direction/soundtrack is all for nought when the script is a pure abomination. A good DVD from Optimum includes all of the main features from the ABUS disc and has a very strong print.

I’ve also added a new Dennis Wheatley page, for anyone looking for more information about this once best selling author.

The Ultimate Hammer Collection – part 1

October 10th, 2006

Yep, its finally here, and we’ve got a nice selection of the discs to review.

The first four full reviews, plus transfer and bonus feature notes are now online so waste no time before checking out our review page.

More reviews from the set coming all week long…

Pre-release reviews – Hammer from Network DVD

October 7th, 2006

Two exclusive firsts:

Reviews of the brand new Network DVD re-releases of Hands of the Ripper (1971) and Twins of Evil (1971). Only here at Mondo Esoterica.